The European Union has set ambitious goals in the production of lithium-ion battery cells used in electric car batteries.
EU Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic stated that the Union will “be in a position to produce batteries for 7 to 8 million vehicles” by 2025 and announced its goal to become the world’s second largest battery manufacturer after China.
In 2017, the EU formed a comprehensive alliance backed by government incentives to reduce European automakers’ dependence on Asia in battery cells. The EU Commission approved the first project in the field of battery cell production in 2019, and a government support of 3.2 billion euros was envisaged for the project.
The Commission gave the green light to the 2.9 billion euro investment package in January. Sefsovic, who is also the founder of the battery alliance, stated that nearly 70 industrial projects are supported within the scope of the alliance.
The Alliance consists of 14 EU countries and 500 companies, including automobile manufacturers such as BMW and Fiat, scientific institutions and the European Investment Bank. The US company Tesla, which has established a battery factory in Brandenburg, Germany, is also in the alliance.
With the investments, it is aimed to increase the profit margin of European manufacturers thanks to the production of the battery, which is the most expensive element of electric cars.
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Saying that the gains achieved so far have been impressive, Sefcovic said, “There is a lot to do by 2025. But by then I am optimistic that we will be able to meet the needs of European manufacturers.”
Pointing out that the raw material supply plays an important role in battery production, as well as the qualified workforce, Sefcovic said that they expect a shortage of approximately 800 thousand qualified workforce in the entire production chain by 2025. It is estimated that 3 to 4 million people will be employed in the sector by 2025.
Sefcovic also stated that the EU Commission and private companies will sign an agreement of 900 million euros in April, which includes the development of battery technologies within the framework of the “Horizon Europe” research program.
It is envisaged that a working group will be formed and framework principles will be determined in order to obtain elements such as lithium, nickel and copper used in battery production in an environmentally friendly way.
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